tv Washington Journal CSPAN December 31, 2011 7:00am-10:00am EST
field and the caucus process in iowa with dave funk. and later, david yepsen, former political editor offers his take on the iowa caucuses. >> the "morning register" puts out its final poll of the republican presidential candidates in iowa. should be a strong indicator of how things will turn out three days from now. the caucus tuesday night. we'll have live events here on c-span and on c-span2, actual caucus session. this weekend, including right now, we will continue to take your phone calls on the iowa caucuses. we'll have guests from deem i don't know, iowa -- des moines,
iowa. and we'll discuss what is your general sense of the caucus process so far, the candidates who they are, what they're saying what it all means, who you like and why. anything you want to say about the iowa caucuses. call -- host: we will have a fourth line just for iowa residents this morning 202-628-0184. we look forward to talking to you. and "the wall street journal" reminds us this morning that on top in iowa, romney and paul. mitt romney and ron paul. they say that mitt romney used flashy entrances and tapped a big named booster on friday to capitalize on new-found enthusiasm for his candidacy.
the article goes on to say, a couple of paragraphs down, the field in iowa has now split into two clear tiers the spectacular rise and fall of so many contenders this season. a new poll showed mr. romney leading the g.o.p. field in iowa with 23% of likely voters with mr. paul in striking distance with 21%. trailing behind are rick santorum and rick perry, nearly tied at 15% and 14% respectively.
little bit more flavor for you here. at an outdoor rally in west des moines, which we saw live, governor christy, quote, you people disappoint me on tuesday, you don't do what you're supposed to do on tuesday, for mitt romney, he said, and i will be back jersey style, people. joking there. voters dodged mud puddles and huddled in mid 30's temperatures to see mr. christy, mr. romney and his wife, ann. the crowd had been growing. friday's event was originally planned for indoors but relocated to accommodate more people. at the same time, mitt romney tops the polls rivals are trying to slow him. as you can imagine. this story says he is now under direct attack on the airwaves for the first time in the primary as a superpack supporting john huntsman's underdog campaign launches tv ads in new hampshire searing romney as a political chameleon.
they have chameleon in quotes here from the ad. host: before we get to calls, i want to remind that you we're following several candidates today. mitt romney is actually not in iowa for the day. he's in new hampshire and coming back later. we're covering ann romney later today and rick santorum. but rick perry is our first live event today. is an event at a gourmet coffee and gift shop. rick perry will be there at 11:30 eastern time it should go about an hour. this event will be held in fort
dodge, iowa, today. so you can watch live coverage on this network, c-span. in the meantime, rick perry campaign released a new online ad titled "win iowa." here's a peak. >> hi. i'm rick perry. as we travel across the state, i've been humbled by your dedication from cafes, town halls, and churches we've talked about our kids' future. you know my records, creating a million jobs while the rest of the nation lost two million i fought back against obama's war on religion. and i've proposed a part-time congress, making them accountable. i'm honored to have your support on january 3. i'm rick perry, an outsider who will overhaul washington. and a prove this message. host: again, rick perry, our first live event today at the meet and discreet in fort dodge, 11:30 eastern time. look for live coverage of ann romney later today, and rick santorum. we'll continue doing this the weekend and monday.
and the caucuses are tuesday. first call from new york city, edward, independent. welcome. hello, edward. caller: a great program. host: thank you very much. what are your thoughts on all of this so far? caller: well, i wanted to give you some numbers. my educational background is i have a ph.d. in accounting. i know it's a boring profession, but i teach in the mba program. i'd like to give you a number. i was reviewing the numbers on reagan's defense budget. it was $312 million a year. obama's defense budget is $700 billion. so that's really double. so then i did the people on social security. the average person on social security makes $930 a month. that's not a lot of money.
so then i'd like to give you a number on the food stamps. the food stamps average in new york is $200 a month which is $6.50 a day. so i think that with a $2.5 trillion trust fund for the social security, i mean, $930 a month is not what you call an overly abundant entitlement. host: bring this to the iowa voting, the iowa story. can you make a connection for us? caller: well, the situation is the defense budget has been wiped out. we're talking about trying to balance the budget. obama now has a budget double that of reagan. that should be addressessed. host: all right. thanks, edward from new york city. let's hear from chicago now, barbara, democrat.
we're talking about the iowa caucuses here. any observations this morning? caller: yes. how are you doing? host: fine. caller: ok. i would like to know, why is it all have guests on your show or when you hear ads with these republicans just bare-faced lying, why haven't these republicans been addressed? just like the commercial that rick perry says he's against war, on obama's war on faith, president obama didn't cause people not to be able to pray in schools. he didn't have anything to do with that. that was done 40 years ago when this man was 10 years old. romney, he had an ad with the president going up, knew it wasn't the president's words but it was john mccain's words. and they let that go. if it wasn't laughable, it would be a crime. i'm so glad that we got tv and people can really look at these
republicans to know that they are not for the american people. their biggest thing is to get this black president out of office. but guess what. not going to happen. you know, it's not going to happen because they never say what they're going to do for this country. they always say obama, obama. host: all right, barbara. thanks for calling from chicago. barbara mentioning ads. we will see several more over these next 90 minutes of the program. so stick around. myrtle beach, south carolina, fred, republican. your thoughts on the caucuses? i don't see whist republicans are even bothering to run. host: why? caller: well, obama is the fourth greatest president that ever lived and i'm sure by the end of the year he'll be the greatest president that ever lived. host: fred what are you hearing down there about the republican field? caller: well, they want to vote for anyone who can beat obama. and it looks like romney is
going to be it. caller: how do you feel about mitt romney? caller: there some things i don't like. the one thing i do like is i would rather have him in there, but there are things i don't like. host: how is ron paul playing down there? can you tell it? caller: to the far right head necks he's playing pretty good. but to the middle rednecks like myself he's not playing very good. host: thanks for the observations in south carolina. i mentioned ron paul because there's a story about ron paul here, what he's up to. he's going back home to texas for the weekend. we'll tell you more about that in a little bit. but the headline in the "baltimore sun" here says that ron paul is courting party switchers. some disaffected democratic voters are planning to switch sides and cast republican ballots in tuesday's caucuses. the rules limit participation to register party members. but anyone who shows up at a republican caucus, including democrats, independents, and libertarians can join the g.o.p.
or switch their party affiliation on the spot. congressman paul in a tight race for first in iowa with mitt romney and perhaps the most likely to benefit from democratic crossovers. advising iowans that they can register republican, quote, for a day on caucus night and switch their registration back if they want. it's easy -- this is a quote. it's easy, you can register on your way in the door, says fisher, telling voters at a campaign stop in atlantic, iowa. texas, our next call. it's leal i can't, democrat. go -- leila, democrat, good morning. caller: hi. how are you? thank you for c-span. i have been following this iowa caucus thing like you would not believe. my prediction is ron paul will be first, rick san tormented yum second and newt gingrich third.
as of january, they're going to move 27% of their pay for taking care of medicare patients and a lot will no longer take medicare patients. this has been going on ever since we've had what you call that extreme white wing tea party leading our house of representatives. so what i'm saying is that americans don't need to ask are we better off. we need to ask -- the questions americans should be asking, are they better off with an extreme right wing tea party congress or would they be better off with a democratic congress? we do not need to change presidents. we need to get president obama some help by getting him a democratic house and a democratic senate. and there's so much i could talk about, but thank you so much. i want to ask our fellow brothers and sisters to vote democrat so that the middle class and the poor people of america can live and survive.
thank you. host: we are asking you your opinion on the iowa process thus far. your opinion on the candidates. i want to know who you like and why. the caucus happens three nights from now, tuesday night, throughout the state of iowa at nearly 2,000 precincts or 2,000 caucus locations. some small, some larger. a couple of other ways to get to us this morning if you can't get in by phone, there is twitter. if you go to twitter, c-spanwj is our handle there. we'll read some of your tweets as the morning progresses. also facebook, facebook.com/c-span is another way to post your thoughts. we'll try to get a couple of those on the air as well. detroit, michigan, in the meantime. it's tom, democrat. how about those caucuses? what are you reading or hearing or seeing that's moving you? caller: the debate first started, what was it, 18 months
or so, debating -- the republicans have been debating for a long, long time already. and we still have however many months to go before november of next year. what is that? 10 months? anyway, it goes beyond that. it doesn't really matter what all of these politicians in washington are jockeying for. i wish there was some democrat who would be willing to challenge, you know, president obama because i think that would make obama a better candidate. if somebody would challenge him. even an independent it doesn't have to be a democrat. it's all beside the point because of what's happening in the world right now. iran, there was nothing in the "new york times" this morning about iran's threat to blockade blockade -- [inaudible] i guess from what i hear on the
news it would affect 1/5 of the world's oil supply. but there was nothing in the paper this morning two days in a row there's stories about iran to do this stuff. and it's not just iran. it's spain, portugal, it's everywhere. there's financial problems that nobody can handle. and nobody seems to know how to handle, anyway. this whole american, republican anything iowa or whatever, the caucuses, it's all beside the point. there's too much other stuff going on. host: all right, tom. thanks for calling from detroit. here's the front page of the "des moines register" on this saturday morning. they're tracking the candidates on the campaign trail. there's a shot of michelle bachmann. they say the crowd was small. the campaign shows signs of slagging momentum friday as she drew smaller crowds than other candidates in campaign stop. ron paul on foreign policy, defended foreign policy views
like doing with a with preemptive military attacks. other candidates have been critical. then they point out that romney takes it outside. he spoke to chilly eyians -- iowans outdoors after the grossy store coffee shop turned out to be too small to hold the crowd. on the front page of "the register" is a picture that's making news everywhere. it's newt gingrich dabbing at a event friday. host: here's a quick look at how it plays out yesterday.
[baby crying] >> wish my mother for being a loving life, having a sense of joy in her friends. but what she reduced me to is late in her life she ended up in a longterm facility. she had bipolar disease and had some physical ailments that introduced me to the whole issue of quality longterm care which did i with bob kerrey for a few years. that introduced me to alzheimer's which i did with bob kerrey for three more years. and my whole emphasis on brain science comes in directly from dealing -- you know from dealing with, you know, the real problems of real people in my family. so it's not a theory. it's in fact, my mother. host: part of mr. gingrich, former speaker, dabbing that tear. a line in "the new york times"
says he cried on friday as he described his mother's struggle with depression and bipolar disorder. quote, i do policy much easier than i do personal, he said. next call, plano, texas. liz, independent. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? host: doing well. how are you? caller: well, i would like to, first of all, say that i'm sure there is a great deal of stress. it does seem that when these candidates have a personal connection with something, they become more activated. i refer back to, i believe, it was one of the secretaries of state or something who went with bono to africa and came back a changed person. as far as the iowa caucuses, you know, i kind of have is a couple of comments there. one would be the emphasis on religion. i'm in texas, and i'm living under rick perry. by the way, waiters and
waitresses work here for $2.17 an hour. all the jobs he's created. but i also have to say, you know, i know that we're not supposed to have law that either prevent or encourage any particular religion. but i'm concerned that all of these self-proclaimed christians or self-proclaimed social conservatives, as they say -- ron paul is interesting, were it not for that. i find it -- you know, you say in your mind what would jesus do? don't know if you remember the bumper sticker. it seems to me the republicans would be much more gracious when comes to the poor and the elderly and the sick, the imfirm, because that's exactly what jesus was supposeddedly all about. so that is my one concern. my other concern is the lies. for goodness sake, everyone needs a kind of civics lesson.
president obama can suggest laws, but he doesn't make the laws. execution, the executive. i wish people would understand it's his job to deal with foreign policy and trade in terms of war and so forth. and it's congress's job to make the laws. and the over juice of the filibuster and so forth. oh gosh, i could go on. but a new congress, like the lady said earlier, would be best. keep our president and get a new congress. but as far as the iowa caucuses, i hope people vote, you know, as much on religion as much as they would generally on what's good for the whole country. we have a lot of different beliefs here. i won't take up anymore time. thank you for allowing me to speak. host: thank you for calling. michael is up now on the republican line from pittsburgh, pennsylvania. caller: good morning. thanks for c-span. host: sure. observations on iowa thus far?
caller: i have been following it a little bit. i am concerned about some of the groups that are positioning -- the liberal groups that are preventing the voting process from occurring. i think that should be stopped. i don't think there's anyplace for protests i think once again they're trying to disrupt things. but my call was about ron paul. i'm a ron paul supporter. and i think that he has the greatest potential for change. and not change just for change's sake but change to bring back fundamentals, bring back the constitution. things like that, fundamental principles that have made our country so great over the years. it's a complete 180. but i think there's nothing wrong with going back to things. everybody keeps saying let's keep moving forward. i think that's not a good thing unless you have something to grab on to.
host: how do you think he will do on tuesday? caller: i think he will do very well, because i think ron paul is the only candidate that i know of that has the greatest potential for attracting liberal , democrats and independents to his platform which has not believed in the republican establishment kind of foreign policy and the same big money control that ron seems to have acquired. host: pennsylvania is a little bit down the line in terms of voting. how might ron paul play in pennsylvania? caller: well, i think right now he's not playing really well because the major media has such control over how people receive these candidates. but i think once he comes to pennsylvania, and he has in iowa, and once people get to hear his real message, unfiltered through the media, i
think he will play very well. host: all right. thanks for calling, michael. to iowa, a twitter message leading up to the caucuses. "a good thing this caucus doesn't count for anything," one viewer writes, "no advantage to have people register only for a day." we'll talk a little bit later in the program with david yepsen, a former political columnist, a editor at the "des moines register" now teaching. we'll ask him how important the iowa caucuses are. up at 8:30 eastern time. back to newt gingrich. the lead story in the "new york times" talks about some very powerful pack ads that are having an influence, a strong influence, according to this piece. the attacks began three weeks ago, "the times" writes, and has not let up since. television ad after ad slamming newt gingrich for having, quote, more baggage than the airlines, for being fined by congress for ethics violations, for his
position on illegal immigration, even more admitting that he has made mistakes on the campaign trail. democrats and republicans alike have singled out the 2.8 million and counting air deluge as the biggest factor in newt gingrich's precipitous drop in the polls and iowa voters and mitt romney's responding rise reshaping the first real contest of the g.o.p. primary season. the average continue to blanket iowa days before the caucuses were created and paid for by people with deep knowledge of the romney campaign strategic thinking, close relationships with mr. romney's most generous donors, and even research on what tv viewers like and dislike most about mr. romney himself. a key point, they say, yet neither mr. romney nor his staff has had to lift a finger or spend a dollar to make it happen. in contrast, in stark illustration of how last year's landmark supreme court ruling on campaign finance has created powerful new channels for outside money to influence
elections, the negative onslaught is the work of a group called restore our future. that's a story in the "new york times." it's actually their lead today. i should point out that newt gingrich, or supporters of newt gingrich, are going to put out quite an ad, a 30-minute special, actually. "the times" pointing out that his campaign is short on cash, unable to buy much ad time of its own. his well financed allies are coming to his rescue in iowa, with large chunks of air time across the state. there is a conservative magazine and website putting out a 30-minute specialen mr. gingrich through the weekend. here is a small clip from that 30-minute ad. >> in 1978, gingrich won his first election to congress representing part of the atlanta suburbs. once in washington, congressman gingrich began to confront the usual politics and became a leading ally of my father, ronald reagan.
he helped congress push through massive tax cuts. he worked to secure a military buildup that helped defeat the soviet union. under his leadership, congress also limited the welfare state. as the leader in the reagan revolution, gingrich began to confront both republicans and democrats in congress for their cozy insider deals. host: and "the times" points out that this 30-minute ad airing in all of iowa's tv markets, hosted by michael reagan, son of the former president, and makes the case that mr. gingrich is the strongest candidate to carry forward the reagan legacy. next call, conway, south carolina and independent. anne, you folks in south carolina, it's coming up soon over there, huh? caller: yes, sir. we can't wait to see ron paul be president. host: why do you like ron paul? caller: because he's honest. tells the truth. he's been saying the same thing for 25 years. i am 68 years old. i have never voted my life. i would never vote because they
all lie. but ron paul has been saying the same thing for 25 years. i'm going to vote. i finally have a politician that's telling the truth. he's been talking about the country all his life and nobody will listen to him. now he finally gets a chance to do something. i think the country better get behind him because this is probably our last chance. obama hasn't done anything. i never done nothing but lie, lie, lie. we don't even know if he's an american or not. said he was a christian, but by his roots he's not a christian. he doesn't believe in anything. he believes in money and power. and i wouldn't vote for anybody but ron paul. i guess americans can do what they want to do but if they want to get out of this hole they dug themselves into, they people across better quit the same old, same old and go with something new of the vote for ron paul. thank you, sir.
host: thank you. this story says iowa leaders paul are leaving the stage to their rivals, at least for this weekend or parts of it the two leading candidates letting their rivals make their final pitches. mitt romney was to campaign in new hampshire today while ron paul was taking time off in his home state of texas. newt gingrich, michelle bachmann mr. santorum, mr. perry all remain in iowa. as for ron paul, some of the writing this morning suggests that he could afford to go home. he's very well established in iowa, and they're not too worried about it other opinions suggest some of the criticism that he's been taking from various areas doesn't want to have to respond to it, this critical weekend. depending on what you read. jacksonville, georgia, democrat calmer. what's your name? caller: [indiscernible] ahead, please. caller: i'm from jacksonville, florida. florida.ksonville, go ahead.
caller: i have been following the caucus also. and i don't think no one on there should be president. all they want to do is take, take, take. they do not want to give to anybody that don't have anything. i think president obama is the best thing that ever happened to all of us. ok? you can't change anything from somebody's core -- host: is there one republican candidate that you might be a little bit concerned about defeating the president possibly? caller: oh, i like ron paul. he seem honest. he seem honest. i like ron paul. i like him. i liked him from the beginning. but i'm a obama fan. but he the only one that seem like he for real. he just seems like he's telling the truth. the rest of them say anything just to get in the white house. host: thanks, joyce. south carolina is on the line now. republican caller. what's your name?
caller: horatio. please. ahead, caller: ok. well, i've got my view on the iowa caucuses. i follow it quite closely here because i watch spinning a lot -- c-span a lot. hello? host: we're listening. caller: ok. i'm sorry. you were moving your lips and i thought you was interrupting me. ok. i watched the caucuses and to what a lot of the democrats that called in this morning said, and the last caller said she was for ron paul because he was honest, i believe that was just a blip trying to get people, because ron paul could not defeat president obama. it's going to take a special candidate. that's why i'm backing mitt romney. they say that nobody's honest except ron paul. well, i beg to differ with that. mr. romney, i don't think they'll be able to dig up any racist remarks or papers on him or anything dishonest. now, they might try to claim that he made dishonest
maneuvers, whatever. look, i'm not a mormon, but i have never met a mormon that was not a hard-working and and honest person. host: horatio, let me read a tweet that's come in "romney is nothing more than a moderate from massachusetts and it's time for liberals to back conservatives." caller: ok. here's the deal there. mitt romney grew up in michigan, born and raised there. his dad was rich. but his dad was born in mexico city and was dirt poor. if anybody would go to wikipedia and read his dad's struggle before he got to be a governor of michigan in the 1960's and actually run for president himself but was beat out by nixon and later went to work as the hud secretary for nixon for four years then went back home to michigan. if they would really read up on willard mitt romney and his dad, they would find that this man is
a great man. and he does speak the truth. host: all right. thanks. caller: wait a minute. i need to make another point. you give a lot of people a lot of time. host: ok. finish up. caller: finish up i said. i'll give one instance about barack obama, how dishonest he is in his presidency. i'd like for everybody to go back to 2009, when his first appointment was the green jobs, and his right-hand gal, ms. valerie garrett. there's a video on where she's saying, talking to a group of people, saying -- she's smiling. she said, and here's a guy that we have really wanted to get for a long time. so no doubt that they vetted van jones. ok? he was a devout communist and spent time in prison and was a radical.
host: all right, horatio. going to let you go now. you've had plenty of time. wanted to mention that while mitt romney is not in iowa today, his wife ann romney will be meeting with voters. that is one of our live events today 1:15 eastern time. she's going to meet with voters in ottumwa, iowa. we will also stay in ottumwa, iowa, later in the day for a campaign rally by rick santorum, the pennsylvania senator. that rally will be at 6:00 p.m. three live events today, rick perry, ann romney, and senator santorum. sioux city, iowa. tom, good morning. caller: good morning. host: what are your observations there in the hawkeye state? caller: well, i had late year ending knee surgery and. and if somebody really wanted to do -- [indiscernible] all they
have to do is play these negative ads and i think everybody down in guan guantanamo would have decided to go straight. just relentless. i was pretty much a lifelong republican. i dropped out of the republican party last may mostly because of what i see is the problem with the freshmen in the congressional house, whatever you want to call it. i think they're pretty much just trying to undo 50 or 60 years of what i considered to be social progress. that's one of the reasons i'm not going go to the caucuses, i'm not going to support any of the current candidates for republicans because i don't think any one of them have the guts to stand up to those guys. if the republican president gets elected, i think the world -- i
have four kids, oldest is 31, youngest is 23, the world they're going to grow up in is going to be completely different than the world i grew up in. host: thanks, tom from sioux city. phoenix is up now, sarah, independent. good morning, sarah. caller: good morning. i am an independent. i voted for barack obama. vote for him again. i originally was democrat. i became an independent because i realized how partisan both parties are, and i felt like i'm not either party. my dad's republican, my mom's democrat. but with the candidates in iowa -- i don't know. i would never volt for newt gingrich if my life depended on it because he thinks poor children should be janitors at their school, and i think that's ridiculous. huntsman, i don't know, i don't know enough about him. i think ron paul, his people scare me just the way they act and how they say things like i'm
going to bring back the constitution. it's just a weird thing to say. because if you really understand our background, it just didn't work like that. and then i just wanted to quickly say -- yeah, perry had an ad, said that obama is attacking our religion. i think that's just the most ridiculous thing i've ever heard of. obama is attacking religion. where does that come from? it's so much misinformation out there. and then the last thing i wanted to say about the republican candidates is just mitt romney, i would never vote for mitt romney. i could not vote for a mormon. i'm not prejudiced against mormons, but my kids went to an all mormon school, live in an all mormon neighborhood, northern arizona, and they would tell my kids things like you can't go out on sunday and go outside and play.
they have just some things about them that i don't agree with. host: appreciate you calling in from phoenix. want to get some other voices in, just under 10:00 left in this segment. we want to learn more about iowa. our guest will be dave funk. nashville, tennessee, rachael, republican. the program. caller: good morning. host: good morning. caller: i have a couple of things to say. i used to think a lot of the iowa caucuses but switching over as ron paul's representative suggest they do for one day, then the caucus ends up not holding any credence. not really, for republicans, if you ask me. the second thing is a couple of callers ago the woman said republicans were not for the poor what we want to do is teach people to fish not give them fish.
i agree with your last caller. ron paul supporters scare me, too. thank you for let meg speak. host: here is a tweet about newt gingrich. "i watched -- this is the event we covered yesterday. "it changed my view of him as not a washington insider. it really opened newt up "i. here's another photo of mr. gingrich, the former speaker. this in "the wall street journal" today. was asked to recall a special memory about his late mother at a campaign stop. he sort of choked up. several articles mentioned he's not the first one to choke up a little bit during the primary process. here is a flashback to 2008 with hillary rodham clinton in new hampshire. >> i have so many opportunities in this country. i just don't want to see us fall backwards. [applause]
this is very personal for me. it's not just political. it's not just public. i see what's happening. we have to reverse it. and some people think elections are a game. they think it's like who's up or who's down. it's about our country. it's about our kids' futures. and it's really about all of us, together. host: 2008 there in new hampshire. we pulled several of the iowa papers beyond "the register." " eye city press citizen" -- city press citizen" front page. down below they talk more about the newt gingrich story yesterday. still making lots of headlines. does crying hurt a candidate? they ask the question. next call, bradenton, florida. jose, democrat. good morning. caller: hi. it's jo-say.
i listen to rick santorum, mitt romney, yesterday to ms. bachmann, mrs. bachmann. i want to say how much i appreciate the opportunity to get exposed to all of these people, and a little bit of depth, through c-span. it's a wonderful gift to the american people. secondly, i want to say that i'm disappointed that i don't hear any of them talking very often or meaningfully about alternative energy. one bug of mine is the availability of hydrogen and now of cold fusion that have transformed what we can do with our economy and the cost of doing it. and yet none of them seem to be up to speed enough to know the kinds of things that can happen, the kind of money that can save this country, and the way our
economy can benefit from tens of millions in new jobs. host: appreciate you calling from florida there. new york city, borough of manhattan. caller: i just want you to know -- i couldn't vote for mitt romney. isn't he worth like like $250 million? that matter?s caller: it matters because, like, it's about somebody relating to you when you vote for them. right? like they relate to your principles, what you believe in. right? that's how i feel when i vote. like i will vote for somebody -- like when i look at obama, i can see, like, being a black man, myself, like what he had to go through to get to where he is right now. like, makes me feel like i can understand. ron paul, i like ron paul because i think the government does spend a lot of money, personally. ron paul is somebody i could vote for. but when it comes to obama and mitt romney, i don't think i
could choose mitt romney and really feel like he's going to do something for me, thinking of me first. i'm -- i'm mad at obama because i feel like instead of doing health care in the beginning, he should have went for jobs. but i know health care would have been harder in his second term. i'm going to vote for obama. host: all right. thanks. "sioux city journal" front page this morning.
host: here's the front page of "the times republican." they call it central iowa's daily newspaper. they have a shot here of rick santorum wearing that red sweater from the event yesterday, blasting obama for being weak on iran. that's the headline in the "times-republican." time for a few more calls on iowa. california, republican. what's your name? caller: bill. host: go ahead. caller: these elections, i feel it's a lottery system since it doesn't matter. it just depends on how much money can you pour into a campaign and what a candidate's posture, grooming and suit looks like. the trailer park states, battleground states, that have the electoral college, with the corruption in the voting system,
it's not a fair election. it's not a democracy. takes lottery system pure and simple. host: what does all of that mean to you then? caller: it means it's ball who can pour the most money into the campaign. it's just a popularity contest. host: what should change about the process based on what you said? money outke all the of it, period. just make it a fair, honest democracy. as the two-party system, the back and forth, that's just a distraction. anybody who plays that game is just foolish. they're just taking part in it. and they're complaining. host: thanks a lot, bill, for calling. how does the caucus work? "the wall street journal" haze couple of points. they remind us that the caucuses are tuesday, 7:00 central time, 1,774 precincts.
only republicans can caucus, but others can register as party members on caucus day. representatives of each campaign are given time to speak on behalf of their candidates. voters can cast secret ballots. the caucus, you should know, also elects dell gaults to attend a county convention in march. the delegates are not bound to follow the caucus results but they usually do. and the county conventions elect delegates to attend a district convention and a state convention which in turn, pick delegates to attend the g.o.p. national convention to be held in tampa in august. just a short primmer there on caucus points, how it all works. we'll have two of them, one on c-span, one of c-span2 at 7:00 central time which is 8:00, of course, in the east. last call is riverside, california, democrat. good morning. paula. caller: good morning and happy new year. host: happy new year to you. caller: i'm a democrat, and i'm a christian. if anyone thinks that jesus
would be for creating a power of age that has control over -- [indiscernible] really has it backwards. ron paul -- [indiscernible] wound up needing government care in her elder years so romney is another businessman doing another one of those for the average people. president obama helped me keep my home with the modified home loan, thanks to him. even with all the people against him, republicans against him, he managed -- he's managing to do something. so, you know, why change now? some people want to take away all of our social security. god bless america. thank you. host: thanks for calling. there will be plenty more time for your calls the rest of the
program. i just want to remind you, or let you know, that at 9:15 eastern time this morning we're going to wrap up the "washington journal" by asking you what you think the top news story is of the year. so you can tune in, call in as well, let us know what you think. and if you want to post your thoughts on facebook ahead of time, facebook.com/cspan is our address. but more from des moines in a couple of minutes. we will meet dave funk, co-chairman of the polk county iowa republican party. he'll talk to us about how the state and local iowa g.o.p. is preparing for tuesday night. as we go to the break, we'll show you some more of the ads currently playing in iowa. these are from the campaigns of mitt romney, ron paul, and newt gingrich. >> my life in the private sector, i've competed with companies around the world. i've learned something about how it is that economies grow. we're not going to balance the budget by pretending that all you have to do is take out the waste.
we're going to have to cut spending. i'm in favor of cutting spending, capping federal a percentage of g.d.p. at 20% or less, and having a balanced budget amendment. right answer for america is to stop the growth of the federal government and start the growth of the private sector. i'm mitt romney. and i approve this message. >> when it's show time, you want big cuts? ron paul's been claiming it for years. budget crisis? no problem. got a trillion year one, that's t with a t. department of education, gone. interior, energy, hud, commerce, gone. that's how ron paul rolls. ron paul, do it. >> i'm ron paul. and i approve this message. >> some people say the america we know and love is a thing of the past. i don't believe that. because working together i know
we can rebuild america. we can revive our economy and create jobs, shred government and the regulations that strangle our businesses, throw out the tax code and replace it with one that is simple and fair. we can regain the world's respect by standing strong again, being true to our faith, and respecting one another. we can return power to the people and to the states we live in so we'll all have more freedom, opportunity, and control of our lives. yes, working together we can and will rebuild the america we love. i'm newt gingrich, and i approve this message. >> "washington journal" continues. host: more from iowa this morning. on your screen is dave funk, co-chairman of the polk county republican party in iowa. good morning.
thank you for joining us. guest: great to be with you. host: speak of the mobilization, couple of the headlines in iowa regarding iowa, getting folks out to vote. what's your sense of how the machinery is working to get folks out? guest: well, you know, in the past we've had a lot of face-to-face calls or when i say face-to-face i mean direct calls by volunteers. this year we've seen more auto calls, robo calls. i don't know that that's just technology take offering the caucus process in the ads or if it's cheaper to do a robo call on a penny a piece than it is to staff up and ramp up and equip a campaign apparatus to run a volunteer phone bank. so is a little bit of difference. i was out of town traveling most of the day on thursday around the state of iowa. my wife recorded 62 telephone calls that day to our house. well, when you dismissed her mom
calling a a couple of personal calls, we have around 55 phone calls thursday to our home from the various candidates, issue advocacy groups, that sort of thing so just a slight difference. i've been involved since about 1980 in the caucus process here in iowa. so you can just seat change weave hae happen over time. -- we've had change over time. host: for clarification, explain what polk county, iowa is. how many people what is it like there? guest: it's a typical midwestern city, about 450,000 people in polk county. the state capital, des moines is situated in polk county itself. pretty much a very good cross section of the state of iowa. you've got a good sized urban area with a mix of first and second ring suburbs, and yet we still have more than 700 farms across polk county itself. so it's a little microcosm of what the state of iowa really like and what most of
america looks like. i grew up in buffalo, new york, yet i could ride my bicycle from the inner city out to my uncle's farm in about a 15-mile jaunt. it's pretty much what polk county and des moines is like today. host: what exactly is your job in these final days specifically, mr. funk? guest: as the cochair, our job is not to be about individual candidates but about the logistics of pulling off a good caucus. i don't want a campaign to look at us in a month or so, and say, jeez, if you guys haven't screwed it up on caucus night, we would have won the iowa caucuses and i would still be a viable candidate. our job with more than 108 precinct sites across the county, some with a population of 1,000 or 2,000 with a maximum population of around 3,500, we could have several hundred attendees at each of these precincts. so we've had to logistically find the spots do it. fortunately it's not rocket science. you know, they've been doing the caucus since the mid 1960's. so we have schools available.
we have churches some businesses, community centers, that sort of thing, across the county. and then a few sites and areas where we don't have a big republican presence. for example, some of the inner city sections of des moines. we have consolidated two or three caucus sites in one school so they'll be using various classrooms or assembly rooms within the school, the gyms. that's been our challenge for a year. we're thinking of this 18, 24 months out, how do we do the next caucus and what do we need to do in a presidential year, with an open seat in our mind where we know we're going to have several candidates competing. we want to logistically make sure that we have all the volunteers in place, which in this case is close to 20,000 across polk county. we not only have the volunteers in place, but we have all the documents they need at each caucus site and are prepared to do the party's annual business meeting which is what the caucuses really are. it's a big organizing function for us. in many state, parties around country, i'm sure are somewhat envious of our opportunity to not just walk into a ballot and check eye box and walk out --
check a box and walk out but you get to interact. and the arguments, face-to-face, from someone you've probably known for a long time sitting to you that may or may not be with your candidate or maybe are trying to convince you to jump on to their candidate if you're undecided. so it's much more interactive it tends to make iowans a little sharper when it comes to the political game. host: our guest is live in des moines, iowa where the caucus meetings will happen three days from now. look for live coverage here tuesday night. he's dave funk, co-chairman of the polk county republican party. david is our first call. david is a republican from biloxi, mississippi. good morning. caller: good morning. how are y'all doing this morning? host: doing well. caller: good deal. i just wanted to say i heard a lot of callers earlier talking about mitt romney, talking about new nutt -- newt. i think mitt romney is just a poster child for health care. he did it once. going to do it again. he's not going to repeal nothing.
newt is another one. he's been apologizing for his life -- i don't see how i could look people in the face, apologize for my pretty wife that's standing beside me. so these guys right here are just telling people what they want to hear. and probably ron paul is the closest one to telling truth in the whole country. the psychology of this thing doesn't affect me none. there's psychology in politics. most of the country believes in the psychologies. i never have. i go right for the facts. these people ought to go for the facts. i'm not so for sure the popular vote counts. so i'm hoping the electorates are smart enough to do the right thing. thanks. host: interesting point, mr. funk, psychology versus the facts. any thoughts on what that call her to say? guest: you know, i've heard that before. but when you look at the voters, particularly in iowa, they're pretty sophisticated group. in a coffeetting shop and literally -- in literally nowhere, small
community outside of des moines. and a presidential candidate in, and you would be amazed at the quality of questions from people who you normally wouldn't associate with someone, you know, a farmer, a businesswoman a housewife some retired folks sitting around the smoky row, the original smoky row. and yet the level of the sophistication of the questions tell me the facts count. particularly among caucusgoers. we're talking about probably 125,000, 130,000 people are going to turn out on 2nd, look these folks -- you know, they've had a chance to look these candidates in the eyes in many cases and take measure of them as men and women. so facts are clearly far more important to iowans and records than perhaps just the mob psychology that this gentleman just called and made a claim that was a big impact. host: that last caller sort of wrote off romney and gingrich in his mind but spoke highly of ron paul. we read a lot about ron paul's organization in iowa and how
important it is and how strong it is. what are your observations of what he's doing well that others may not be doing well? can you speak to that? >> well, both he and senator santorum have very good on-the-ground operations. senator santorum has somewhat been ignored by the mainstream press because he hasn't grabbed the national attention of the but when you make -- when you make 380 stops, individual campaign events across iowa, you're going to attract a lot of attention. i would not dismiss senator santorum's organization or for in a that matter what i see with governor perry or governor romney's operations. they're very well organized. paul will get some credit because he's very loud. and in a few places he can attract very large crowds, particularly in the college towns, ames, iowa city, where you have relatively influenced, eisley influenced, -- easily influenced young voters. but the bulk of the caucus viewers are going to be 50 years
old and older. that younger crowd tends to have less of an influence on the caucuses because they just don't come and sit for the two, three hours that is anticipated that you'll have to sit down and stay and go through the whole process. in my own precinct, four years ago, there were more than 50 ron paul signs in the precinct area. it was a relatively large geographic area, one of the larger geographic precincts in polk county. i live in the country yet we had only one person vote for ron paul. just because you have an organization doesn't mean assume voters turn out. host: ok. mike, democrat, from north carolina. hi there. caller: how's it going? host: fine. caller: i'd like to say a young african-american, you know, with a recent increased interest in politics, whether or not it's because obama is in office or not, it doesn't matter. my thing is that, you know, it's kind of discouraging to see that there's so much racism involved in politics. and to hear all of these comments from callers who just want obama out of office just
because he's a black man. it's really discouraging. i just hope -- actually, i really hope that he decides to not run for a second term. i feel like the amount of criticism and racism that he has faced -- not just him but his family -- i feel like it's unfair. i feel like he's a berman than that -- a better man than that. i just hope that he decides to pursue other interests. you know what i'm saying? host: thanks, mike. dave funk, anything to respond to there? caller: you know, i go back to what martin luther king said. i'm going to judge the man based on the content of his character and not the color of his skin. that's the way we do things in the republican party. i could care less what the color of the skin is of the president of the united states. this current's president's policies are bad for america and the entire way he's operating his administration has been bad for america. and it's done more to drive a race wedge in america than to
being inclusive. clearly he's not been successful as a president on those issues. host: from los angeles now. mark, good early morning to you. mark is a republican. caller: hi. thank you for taking the call. i just wanted to say that i believe that listening to mitt romney over the years this man is one of the most insincere candidates i've ever seen or heard from. i am a republican. and that is a man that i could never vote for. ok? ever. i voted republican all my life. at every level. this is a man that has changed his positions for political gain so obviously on so many positions -- on so many different issues that how this man can even really be taken seriously by conservatives like
myself is almost unbelievable to me i think he made a statement where you said you think iowa republicans are very sophisticated. sure hope that's the case because otherwise we're going to have one big snow job in mitt romney. host: before we let you go, who do you like? santorum is the obvious conservative choice in this election. it's not even close. and a distant second would be newt gingrich. host: thanks, mark. dave funk, he hopes there's no snow job going on. caller: well, you know, let's talk about the weather. i'm not going to get into individual candidates. i'm here to represent the party and talk about the logistics. thankfully from a logistical standpoint it looks like the forecast is going to be good on tuesday, unseasonably warm temperatures in the high 30's, low 40's at caucus time. so i don't think we'll have to worry about a snow job across the state of iowa.
just interesting that when you look at the polls, as close and as tight as this race is i think iowans are doing a pretty good job of vetting out these individual candidates. host: let me ask you a little bit more about the process. you mentioned organization for a caucus. you mentioned length of time. these things could take two, three, even four hours. but walk us through it from the individual standpoint again, this coming tuesday. what would they expect? how do they attend? give us more flavor if you could. guest: we actually -- we don't open the doors. we open the doors very early, 6:00 p.m., others at 7:00, the larger ones. you come in, check in because it's a private party function. it's not a state election. we mandate that you show an identification, prove that you live in the precinct. so it's very difficult if not on the republican side to stack up a bunch of folks into a precinct caucus to try to bring in fraudulent
voters or people claiming they've just moved to iowa yesterday and they want to vote, participate. so once you get checked in -- and you're checking in with your neighbors. you can only attend a precinct caucus in the precinct where you live. so you're going to go check in. you'll be given papers, different colors, different precincts. different counties do things to ensure the security of the ballot. use the paper we provide you. once you get checked in, your temporary chairs, both chairs of the party, will open the meeting. you'll elect a permanent chair. you'll establish your rules, generally robert's rule of order are used. then you begin the caucus process. each of the candidates is given a few minutes, actually a candidate or his representative. in both coactsiouses -- caucuses sites there will only be one representative speaking for each candidate. depending on what the rules of that specific caucus group that evening. they make their own rules. within a general set of
guidelines most folks adopt the standard set of rules that we've used for many, many years. once the candidates have had their chance to speak, everyone votes. the votes were pulled off to the side. each of the campaigns with a representative watch the actual vote counting, look at the ballots as they're tallied and stacked up. when it's all finished, the results are called in first to the state party where they record both by an automated line and a backup manual writing down to make sure we don't have any computer, logistical issues or problems there. then once that's done, the results are announced at the caucus. many people at that point will leave. but the real interesting parties, to me, of the caucuses, stay, become a delegate, to become involved in the party difference, help introduce planks to the platform at the precinct level. we will elect a couple of committee members from each of our precincts. and then typically that will take two to three hours.
democrats do it slightly differently. we just have a straight up or down vote. we record and report those results. democrats will in their caucus, you have to have a viable candidate. i forget what the percentage of the floor they would set. joke about my wife and i being in a mixed marriage, she's a democrat i'm a republican, and she'll go over to her caucus site, i'll go to mine. and at the end of the evening i may be back in three hours, some nights she's been there for four or five while they wrangle on about to see who the top three, four candidates are going to be to have enough votes to be viable and report to the state party and go on to new hampshire. very kind of quirky system, but it works really well. it's a way to get regular line voters, just the average iowans, involved heavily in politics. a great organizing method or mechanism, for us across the state of iowa for both republicans and the democrats. host: a lot of insight there from our guest. he's dave funk, co-chairman of the polk county republican party joining us from iowa this morning. the caucus happens in three
days. tampa, florida, diana, democrat. thank you for waiting. much.: thank you so how are you? host: doing well. caller: i'm so glad to be on the show this morning. i've been calling and calling. anyhow, i have been watching the candidates. i kind of think, to be honest with you, ron paul seems to be a little more sincere and honest. i'm a little concerned about his policies. probably wouldn't vote for him. we have to remember -- [indiscernible] as far as mitt romney, i just feel like in interviews he will say anything to get votes i think he's sort of a flip-flopper, so there's sort of a distrust with him. newt gingrich, i think he has a bit of a bitterness and
sourness. i really wanted to see more candidates. i'm not real, real happy with them. i don't know. i guess my feeling on it is as i see children grow older and our country, we're getting more liberal. i wonder what happened to our true republican party. i think the tea party holds some republicans from compromising with president obama and it concerns me. remember, the tea parties don't help make laws. they can say what they want, but they are not making laws. i have an open heart there for john boehner. i just feel like he was being held back so much. i'd like to see more compromise. let obama in there. i feel like even in four years we might not be able to turn that economy around. host: diana, thanks for calling from tampa there. let's hear from our guest. guest: i hear people talk about compromise and i go back to the old phrase, how do you compromise tyranny?
when you have this big a divide between what the democratic party in iowa or across the country today wants and what the republicans want. and conservatives versus liberals. i simply look at that and say i'm not going to compromise my core principles just so the media is nice to me or they want to get along. at the end of the day we know it works. -- what works, less government, smaller government, local government works much better than large, national, dictatorial governments. so at the end of the day i'm always going to lean to the right myself and go with what we know works. as i said, you know, ronald reagan was able to turn this economy around back in 1980 his election. as i've heard speaker gingrich say several times on the campaign trail, the recovery will start the day the senate is flipped over and a republican goes to washington. until that time, we're going to hear reports like we hear this when the closing bell happens on wall street jedd, the dow up slightly for the year, the s&p neutral for
the first time in 60 years finished in the same spot it then the nasdaq was down significantly. what that tells me is the dow, you know, big corporations get a lot of flak in both the media and from people. we forget they're the only ones with another horse power and money to defend themselves from washington where main street is not able to do so because of our over reaching, huge, and unnecessarily large government. host: 20 minutes left with our guest. new jersey. independent caller named david. caller: hi. how are you? host: i'm well. caller: yes, i have been following social security, disability and have been for quite some time of i was very disappointed that for the two years prior to actually -- tomorrow, 2012, my cost of live doing not go up for two years. i had never experienced that loss. my rent went up $100.
and what i lost, as far as losing my cost of living in my social security disability, did not catch up at all to my cost of living that i've experienced. so i am still behind the eight ball one whole year. and i'm wondering where all of that money went for the past two years that i lost and i'm sure millions of people that are on legitimate disability have lost. host: david, can you connect it to the presidential race, to iowa? we have the co-chairman of the polk county republican party on. caller: well, i'm just curious curious -- i'm actually connecting it in a sense that i wish -- i'm also leaning towards ron paul because it feels like he's a little more honest, a little more transparent, as far as where money goes. where is money going.
i think lottery is a big scam. and i think not enough people are informed as far as transparency in the government. host: thanks for calling. dave funk? caller: you know, we've got a really screwed up monetary policy right now under ben bernanke. until we move him out of the fed and put someone in there that's responsible and understands that we have to have sound dollars, people like david are going to continue to suffer as they see the value of the u.s. dollar deteriorate significantly. just in the last two years we've watched the price of milk double, the price of gas up $1 to $1.50 a gallon across most the country, even greater increase for diesel fuel which impacts everything we do. essentially anything you get comes to you on a truck in some way, shape or form. so the lack of a sound fiscal policy sean monetary poll -- and monetary policy is clearly impacting people like david. the middle class is most impacted by inflation. we have a somewhat screwed up
way that we calculate inflation which really gives the social security administration and the congress a chance to spend more money, not have to claim we've had a big increase in inflation and yet guys like david, down at the bottom, he's kind of stuck where he is. he's disabled. he's on social security. the very people we need to be taking care of. he's the victim of these really poor policies on part of the barack obama administration. host: back to the process, and as that caller mentioned ron paul as well, there's a story published in the "baltimore sun" talking about ron paul courting party switchers. they write that adding an to all ofble element this, disaffected democrats are planning to switch sides and cast republican ballots. they write that caucus will limit participation to party anyone who shows up at a g.o.p. caucus, including democrats, independents, and join theans, can g.o.p. or switch their party affiliation right on spot. and some are suggesting that this could help ron paul.
in fact, his campaign, according to this piece, mr. funk, is distributing information sheets advising iowans that they can register republican for a day, a day, on caucus night and then switch back. can you explain all of that? is this all accurate? guest: it's essentially accurate. the big trend we've seen in iowa is we are passed an increase every month. we have the reagan democrats back in 1979, 1984 -- 1979, 1984 elections, we had a larger number of democrats came out and caucused for ronald reagan so just because people are going switch parties doesn't mean they're automatically ron paul voters. i know several conservative democrats that are coming to vote for candidates other than ron paul. become ant to
republican, we'd love to have you. it takes a little bit of evert. you can't register that night being be a republican, change your registration on the way out. you have to go back down to the elections office later and -- to change your party registration. we found people tend to not do that. it is a little overhyped in the press. people become republicans, they typically stay republicans after that. host: most recent big poll in case viewers missed it this morning, nbc and merit has mitt romney up 23% in iowa now. ron paul at 21%. rick santorum, 15%. this is nbc-marist. look for the des moines register's final poll to come out, 8:00 eastern time we should see the results. illinois, randy, democrat, good morning. caller: good morning. host: how are you? caller: i'm good. i got a few things for dave. first i want to thank c-span. and i'm a democrat switching for ron paul, too.
just wanted to say, you know, newt gingrich is crying all the way to the bank. i want to know if dave is going to support or stand behind ron paul once does win iowa because he seems to be deflected. you think?do guest: i'm going to work hard for whoever our nominee is. time, i'll tell you when i hear people -- with the exception of a few county chairmen across state of iowa, generally we remain neutral. it's one of those unwritten laws. story county, johnson county, a few of the county chairs across the state have come out in supported of specific candidates. i don't know how you can credibly look at your fellow -- at your neighbors. literally the folks that you live and work around every day. when you're working hard for one specific candidate but then you claim you're going to be an independent arbitrator at the evening of the caucuses and make sure there's no logistical problems or no question about
the integrity of the vote. and in almost every case that i'm aware of and in fact, every case that i'm aware of, where the party chairs or cochairs have come out and endorsed a specific candidate, they've been doing that for ron paul. and i don't think that's appropriate. you don't hear our state party chairman talking about who he's supporting. you won't hear me talking about who i will caucus for. you go to anything you want in your private life. but when you're a county-elected official which you are when you're a chairman or co-chairman, i think it's very important that you stay out of the endorsement process preprimary. we get a nominee, i'll work hard to get him elected whoever that is. but until that time i'll remain silent as to who my choice is in a public venue. if my friends ask, i will tell them which way i'm leaning. but no one will know how i'm going to vote that evening. and i don't think any chair or cochair should be making those statements. members should remain neutral in this process. to protect the integrity of the vote here. .
because if you look how they speak in other states, they change. they just somehow think we're -- grow pigs and corn and that's it. host: dave, republicans talk down to people like him. guest: first, thank you for your service. i've had a chance to meet with every one of the candidates, of the major seven or eight candidates on more than one occasion and i've never -- both on a personal basis and then having them into our county to help do fund raisors and i don't get the perception that you get. i see genuine interaction, letting both men and women, people look in their eyes and take measure. clearly, i don't get the same perception. it's down the calendar a little ways. so the difference between an iowa caucus and what you're getting in the state of iowa 3
million people, we get a lot of opportunity for direct interaction with the candidates. and jack kemp talked about that when he was friends with my grandfather, i grew up in buffalo, new york, a great patriot and great american. but congressman kemp gave me a little dissertation when i was about 13 or 14 years old back in 1972 and my grandfather was living talking about how iowa new hampshire were chosen and the ability to vet the candidates. you get to a major media market, you get down to florida, the super tuesday states and you -- the only way you can run a campaign is to run major tv ads, takes a lot of dollars. but in iowa and new hampshire, those are places where someone like.carter could sleep on couches for a year and a half during the time before the iowa caucus back in 75 when he was working very hard to win that nomination, he was able to do it on a face to face basis.
we're seeing similar results today with rick santorum where he's worked very hard just by putting himself out there, 350, 360 as of yesterday, the news reports, i see candidates that can -- looking people in the eye, really is what iowa and new hampshire's role in this whole process. certainly barack obama would not be president today but for the fact that he came out boots on the ground, walked around iowa, met people and everywhere from my little town all the way to des moines and across the state. so i think it's a very efficient system. it's a good way to get the wheat and the chaff separated so we move the best candidates on for both parties. host: some additional information beyond retail politics and phone calls as we've talked about the
financial times lists the ad purchases of the various candidates. talk first about rick perry. $2.6 million spent. super packs on his behalf, 1.33 million. ron paul has spent 1.3 million. mitt romney 1.1 million and super pack expenditures, 3.86 and the numbers go on there. what's your sense of the blanketing of the air waves as several callers have mentioned? they said they're just getting pounded. guest: we really are. if you didn't buy your tv ads for your small business, if you are running television advertising and locked it in, right now most everybody knows you make hey while the sun is shining. so major media and the newspapers, radio, television across the state of iowa we're seeing just a tremendous ad blitsd almost to the point where it becomes white noise. so that's where someone who has
had a lot longer time on the ground -- maybe mid august last summer and before where they had a lot of time to build an organization, clearly has an advantage because a lot of minds are made up. this morning listening to the news, they're still talking about 45% of iowa is undecided. so those ads are going to make a difference. >> let's hear from glenn view. caller: good morning. a couple of points i would like to bring up and have responded to. one of them -- i'm a democrat. one of them the gentleman talked about is how he quoted martin luther king and said this is the way we do things in the republican party. i want to bring out that ron paul has recently been endorsed by several groups and white power groups. that doesn't make him a racist but a man of integrity, it
becomes his responsibility to come out and say you know what? i don't want your votes. i repudiate your votes and i think you're going to be disappointed in me if i get elected. guest: first, i spent a lot of time in glenn view, i'm familiar with your city. it's a wonderful place. you don't have to accept the endorsements of a group. i think you're exactly right. when a white supremist group comes out and endorses you, it's a good thing to distance yourself from that. this is a guy in the 80's who walked away from the republican party and joined the libertarian party and came back and is now running as a republican again. take that as face value. but the republicans i know, the conservatives i know, we all look folks in the eye. i believe as my generation and
i'm 53 years old, i look people in the eye and take measure of those men and women and take their action not on the color of their skin. so it's somewhat of an insult to lump us in with this ron paul stereo tipcal taking endorsements from anyone and everyone who is out there and being proud of it. if i was a candidate i would not be accepting the endorsements of someone like that. >> we'll continue to have our presence not just in des moines but throughout the state as we're covering several candidates or spouses today, several live events. dave function, cochairman, taking another call here. mary, independent. welcome to the program. caller: the ads that are running in your state. one in particular rick perry. i would like to know what
obama's war on religion is and what iowans think of that. and secondly, what happened to michele bachmann as far as iowans are concerned? at first she won the straw pack and now you don't [inaudible] host: someone we haven't talked about too much. guest: on the ads i think i would defer to governor perry's campaign to answer the questions. clearly when the president of the united states when 99% are christians, to say we're not a christian nation is not an accurate portrayal of what america is. to follow up, though, to get into the backman question, michelle has been out working hard every day. i've gotten to know her a little bit and i have friends working for her and they feel like they're doing what they need to do to be as successful
as they can be in the iowa caucuses with the events of the last week she's certainly been put in a difficult position when a state senator basically jumps ship five days before the end of the caucuses really calls that state senator's judgment into question and his loyalty and three hours later seen wearing the same clothes at another campaign's events, that really knocks both the balkman and the ron paul campaign off message for a few days as people wonder what happened and it calls into question the integrity and judgment. i feel bad for michelle that happened but you can't control the people who work for you and in this case someone who has been a big disappointment but not just to the balkman campaign but to those who know senator sornson. host: governor gary johnson is asking iowans to vote for ron paul. he's the former nume governor
announced that he is seeking the libertarian nomination for president. guest: i met gary beck in the spring and had a brief meeting, a very intelligent gentleman who did a lot of good things down in new mexico. but at the same time you're now a libertarian. and a libertarian endorsing a republican is just fine but at this point you're not a republican. i would ask that you stay out of our affairs. if you want to move to iowa, change your residents, then you can have a vote but right now you don't have a vote in the iowa caucuses. i don't think that endorsement is going to carry a whole lot of weight.
host: time for a couple moff calls. caller: i had a question about how iowa allocates their delegates since it looks like no one candidate is going to get more than 34% of the votes. will one end up with all delegates or will they be allocated to vare candidates? guest: if i -- you have to remember, this is a private party function, and the vote is not binding. so if the winner of the iowa straw poll drops out of the race as for example mike huckabee did then those delegates are basically released to do as they see fit. that's why we go through a whole process of the county conventions, the district conventions, the state conventions to pick our national delegates. that's got a big impact.
at this point it's a test of organizing strength like the straw poll was and going forward it's who is viable. who have we vetted to send down to new hampshire to let those folks see how those candidates do at the next step and then south carolina and florida. but the convention delegates or the delegates are not allocated specifically to a candidate. they're free to do what they want when convention time comes because as many knows the winner of the iowa caucuses, top one, two, or three have come on to become the nominee. but the winner isn't necessarily going to get the dell gates down the road. particularly if they drop out. they're bound by what the state party members have pushed down to tampa in august to make their decision who they are going to support at the national convention. host: let's go to sarah on the
democrat's line. caller: i'm calling from scottsdale and i'm just a little irritated and i'm going to try to get it out quick so he can answer me. but i'm really tired of people saying that barack obama is hurting people, hurting the erledly, hurting people with disabilities all that crap. like what position are you twisting to make that point? that's just one thing. and then the second thing i want to say is you keep talking about less government. what does that mean? i just want my government to work for me. if we need health insurance, if my kids are sick, if something happens. and then another thing i wanted to say to you because i want to make sure you come to me after you speak is i am a christian, i'm a democrat. but i'm a liberal democrat. a lot are like me who believed jesus is a liberal. so republican talking points are getting on my nerves because you're saying all these things that everybody spouts out. i want facts behind things.
host: let me just in and get a response. guest: sure. i appreciate your positions but when you see 10% unemployment, when the real number's probably closer to 16, not the u-3 number, when you see prices increasing substantially every day and people's incomes are not going up under the pelosi congress and senate still run by harry reid, the united states senate hasn't submitted a budget in over 900 days one of their basic constitutional requirements you can't govern if you don't follow the rule book. and the obama administration and senator reid and pelosi were not following the rule book the way our government was set up to operate. i'm all for you getting hins. but i would much rather bn managed in the state of arizona than in washington, d.c. where a one size fits all solution that doesn't fit all the
framers were brim ynt where they created laboratories of democracy to figure out the best way to do things and to compete among each other and grab as we do the best practice that is we see in this case to be used across the country. they're successful in the state of iowa with a program other states are going to adopt it. if you're successful in arizona with a program, other states are going to adopt it. i don't see that in washington. what i see is do it our way or else. and it's not working for the american people. you know that. big government doesn't work. government is not the solution here. government is the problem. host: our guest has been dave funching. thanks a lot for your -- funk. thanks a lot for your time this morning. coming up more about iowa from iowa discussion of the role and history of the caucuses.
our guest will be columnist davetyepsen who has moved on to academia at this point still doing plenty of writing and commenting especially on programs like this. so we'll take more of your calls in just a little bit on iowa as we continue our live coverage from des moines. but first, we are joined by some hungry patrons at max's highway diner live in iowa. >> the location of max's highway diner and we're here to talk to iowans about their caucus experience. first is an employee here, rose mary. hello. >> hi. >> tell us about as a life long iowan how do you look at the caucuses? >> we wait and listen to see what they're going to tell us and then we make our decision of which one is going to be the best one to have in office.
>> when you look at the ads how does that influence your decision making? >> that's kind of a hard one because they all seem to be telling the truth and which one we would have to pick. that's kind of hard to say. >> are you a caucus night participant? >> no. >> why not? >> i'm not sure. i really just don't take that much of an interest in it. i know who i want in there that's going to be the best for us. but to actually do that i'm not that well ed cate to understand which -- to understand which one. >> who did you caucus the last time and who do you plan this time? >> i'm really not sure yet. i voted for obama and i'm probably going to stay along those lines. >> and then tell us a little bit as for people like us who visit every four years, what do you think about the buses coming by? >> that's pretty cool actually.
except the only thing i don't like is the telephone polls. i don't like to stay on the telephone that much. >> thank you. >> you're welcome. nice to meet you all. >> we're joined also by kevin hall and his wife. where do you live? >> conrad. >> tell us a little bit about your experiences. . >> we haven't been for quite a while but we're getting tired of all the phone calls and political ads, fighting each other. >> how often do the phone calls come? >> i think last night we had about four in an hour but there wasn't anybody on the other end it was probably all recorded messages. >> you said you haven't participated why is that? >> we're registered independents. we just haven't decided to go caucusing i guess. >> have you decided -- >> we talked about it but we haven't made a decision yet. >> the candidates coming
through, does any stick out? >> we kind of like rick santorum. >> why so? >> family values. >> talk a little bit then, like i asked rose mary every four year the influence of the people coming by. how does that play to ultimately what you do on tuesday night? >> all negative campaigns turn us off. there's a lot of good stuff that goes on but we just look for the best qualified person with family values because that's what's going to lead the country. >> thank you very much. >> thanks. >> some of the comments there from max's highway diner. we'll also btb at fort dodge for a rick perry event at 11:30 eastern time about three hours from now. and we'll show the romney event
and stay in iowa for rick santorum live at 6:00 as he does a campaign rally there. we are staying in des moines for now where our next guest will give us some deep insight, we're sure, into the caucus process and the political parts of things. david yepsen you may remember is a former political columnist and has been a guest many times. thanks for joining us. >> good to be back. host: we're hearing that 40% are undecided three days to go. what's your sense of what they're looking for? guest: well, partly this is always true in every caucus. it's frustrating to reporters but some of these are just professionally undecided. they're looking for a lot of things. they're wanting to make sure -- they know this decision is important in both parties. they understand that all this
attention to iowa is important to their party. so they want to vet the candidates well. they want to understand where they are on issues. and i think caucus going activists also care a lot about electability and so you add all that together plus the fact they understand campaigns mean things, campaigns are important. and they want to understand how things play out. a candidate may look good today but not tomorrow. some get in, some get out. so a caucus goer is in no big hurry to make a decision. and finally i think they want to talk to their neighbors. families, friends, neighbors are some of the big determ nants in how people vote. so to say i kind of like so and so. well, i kind of like this other candidate. that goes a long way toward helping people make up their minds. host: our guest spent 4 years as a political -- 34 years as a
writer. now director of the paul simon institute at southern illinois. before we start taking calls, it seems fashionable every four years at least for some to ask whether iowa and the caucus process really matters. in fact, there was an early tweet i wanted to show you and get your take and explain to the country why you think iowa matters. one viewer just says this. what's the history here and the importance? >> the importance is it's first. it's the first place in america where a delegate selection process begins or where rank and file activists express a preference for a candidate. wherever you start the selection of an american president is going to be a big news story, especially these
days. so you know, i am an iowan, i have covered this, i understand the criticisms. i think the reason it stays first is inertia. while the country dislikes all the attention to iowa and to an extent new hampshire receive in this process, the country can't agree on a different way to do it. and there are also unintended consequences to some of these other ideas. if you love money and politics, you would love a regional primary or a national primary. and so the inability of the country to come to some agreement on how else to do this process just keeps iowa and new hampshire at the front of the pack. reformers have in both parties have come together and they've added south carolina and nevada to this mix of early states in an effort to bring some geographic distribution. but unfortunately one of the reasons iowa and new hampshire become so important is these other states in seeking to have
an important role in the presidential selection process constantly are moving their contests closer and closer to iowa and new hampshire earlier in the calendar and unintended consequence is to simply make iowa and new hampshire more important because the candidate who wants to do well in florida, frell, a big important state, has to simply do well in iowa and new hampshire and if they don't they have no opportunity to recover. so i think the two parties are to be commended for trying to do what they can to decompress this schedule of events so more people and more states have a say in this process. and who knows, maybe this will be this year on the republican side will be just like last time on the democratic side in which hillary clinton and barack obama had a nice long race that went through a lot of different states. but the short answer to your question is iowa is important because it's first. host: we will go deeper into your thinking. you wrote for the "washington
post," what you see five myths about the caucuses. let's get a call in first from michigan. caller: good morning. thank you for your continual opportunity for this nation to stay well informed. my comment or question, if you will, is to tell mr. david yepsen that i appreciate what he is doing, his representation of his party. but i think that this caucus is a bunch of just cock mania. because you're high jacking our political process. every individual in this nation has a right to vote and the thing what they're doing now is saying that you can walk into any of the caucuses and change your political party for that moment and then you can go back and change because the process of that is just hilarious. so these people that would like
a republican individual, you know, just like where he stands if they decide to say ok i represent him but then they can't go back and change it. so this is ridiculous. and we've seen this with president bush the way they high jacked the country with the votes and everything. what you need to do is get back to what mr. funk said, we need to have this process with boots on the ground. let the political parties put the boots on the ground, get the votes, let the nation speak. don't do this process that you're doing because it's wrong. let the nation, let us people speak for who we want. host: thank you. guest: well, i disagree with her on one thing and that is people can go into the caucuses and change their registration and vote. as a practical matter, you can leave, the next day you can change your registration back.
but there's not a big tradition in iowa of people going into another party's caucus and voting. it's just not -- there's not that much of it. there's evidence of it from time to time but there's not been that much of it. and so people can change their registration after a caucus. host: washington, d.c., independent. caller: i'm calling because i'm concerned about the media's role in picking candidates. it seems to me that the media seems to want mitt romney to be the republican nominee and the way that they do it is they'll claim that the other nominees aren't electable. they did the same thing with -- in 2008 with senator mccain. they said everybody else except him was electable. and of course the republicans fell for it and then during the general they'll claim that he
is a flip flopper you can't trust him. host: role of the media. guest: well, having spent 34 years as a member of the media, i understand the caller's frustration. a couple thoughts. first, reporters who are covering a campaign, you know, they don't -- they don't take sides. they're just trying to cover a story here. and it's -- electability is always part of the story. who the next american president is going to be is what's on everyone's mind. so the questions about the horse race and electability do in fact work their way into american journalism. i think reporters will be the first ones to criticize the process of being too much of a horse race and not enough focus on issues. but the reason for that occurs because large -- in large part because we think a lot of american people want to know
who is going to win. and so delegates count and campaign reports tend to crowd out larminger discussions of issues sometimes. host: the des moines register final poll comes out tonight we understand, 8:00 eastern time. how big of a deal is this final poll going to be for these candidates? guest: i think it's important psychologically to them. polls are not predicters. and it's hard sometimes to convince people of that. but this is a picture at a point in time and as we've seen it's been fairly fluid and some of these polls that we're seeing now leads are 1 or 2 points. that's margin of error stuff. so i don't look at it too predictively but it's important psychologically to candidates to be doing well the last few hours. this will fire up your supporters. or if you do poorly in the poll it will be depressing to candidates who don't do well.
host: barry on the republican line, north carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. i kind of feel like this is someone trying to, even though i have free will when i know i don't. it's like someone trying to -- it's like the wholesale molestation of america but then trying to blame it on the victim afterwards. host: what exactly are you talking about? caller: because it's like ok, you bring me up here, you put blinders on me and then you put these five choices in front of my face and tell me there's no other choices that we will allow you to pick. but here's the five choices we tell you that you must pick. host: let's hear from our guest. guest: i'm not sure i quite understand the point. reporters and c-span and other news organizations are covering the candidates who run. and if somebody isn't running,
that's their choice. it's not the choice of media people. host: speaking of media and other voices, you wrote recently about negativity. the headline, the piece that you wrote, could negativity kill the iowa caucuses. what's the message of this piece? guest: well, there's a lot of negativity all over american politics and we all complain about it but the fact of the matter is that it works. and if you look back at our country's history we've had some pretty negative campaigns. you look at some of the things said about abraham lincoln. we've had some pretty rough stuff in american political history. it's not a spectator sport and it's not a sport for the faint of heart. so you want to have a good robust campaign. what turns people off though is not only the negativity and the volume of it but also the way
it distracts from other important issues. if we get sidelined into people's personal lives, then i think the electorate feels frustrated and because they want to know -- for example, how are they going to fix the economy. and the change that is have occurred in american politics have placed a greater burden on the nation's media people and a lot of media people are comfortable playing. if you go back to how these caucuses started in 1968 democratses had a horrible convention, they wanted to open it up to include more people and the caucuses are a response to that. in the democratic party they had more events, they open them up, you could file amendments, you could run for delegates, participate in the platform debate. and in doing so, they really broke the back of a lot of political machines and insipeders and made it a much
more democratic -- small d -- process. how are people supposed to get their information? they get it through media people. they become the people who vet candidates. in the old days it might have been a political boss or influential politician, now media people are doing a lot of the vetting of these candidates and that gets uncomfortable for a lot of people. you're talking about personal lives and issues of character. we've discovered in america that a candidate -- what's important about a president isn't just their position on the issues. but also something about their character and how they make decisions and where they might come down on a given issue. so that gets personal and offends a lot of people. and i don't know if there's a cure for that but that's just my best description of the way it is. host: joe on line for
democrats. caller: hi. i have two quhents. one is basically a general legal comment and the second is a specific political comment. my general legal comment is that i think we need a constitutional convention in the united states of america for a new constitution. i think we need a parliamentary system. case in point is we've had, we're talking about an iowa caucus for the last eight or nine months. we have a campaign cycle going on almost as long as the official electoral tenure. and i think it's unconscionable that we have the aims caucus in september and then we have another caucus in january and we're spending all this time and wasting a lot of money on a
system that is dysfunctional. host: dysfunctional he calls it. guest: sure. and there's a lot to criticize about american politics. we all share in the frustration and i've heard other people talking about how we auth to have a parliamentary system. but as a practical matter i doubt we'll ever change. host: we have a little more than 20 minutes left with our guest. david yepsen, a long-time writer for the des moines register, again putting out their final poll tonight. currently director of the paul simon institute at southern illinois university. our guest also wrote for the "washington post" about what he sees as five myths. here's the first one. you write that iowa voters don't represent the united states. that's myth number one.
can you explain? guest: iowa is 97% white so many people are critical of iowa having such an early role. but we're not talking about the state of 3 million people we're talking about 120-150,000 activists in each party are doing. in those activists do tend to reflect the kinds of people who are active in their party nationally. as you look at what goes on in a caucus they look like the same sorts of groups in people who show up on the floor of the national conventions. so iowa doesn't reflect the country. a lot of states don't really reflect the country as a whole. but the activists do reflect their party. and this is a party building exercise. wup of the other myths is this is a huge farm state. and yes it is a rural state. but manufacturing, financial services are a larger part of this state's economy rile right now than agriculture. farmers don't like hearing
people say that but the gross state product is driven more by financial services and insurance than it is by agriculture. so some of the stereo types of this american gothic grant wood figure being the kind of individuals who vote in caucuses really is an incorrect one. host: the retail politics is king in iowa. that's a myth. tell us more. guest: retail -- i started covering campaigns with jimmy carter and i was a young reporter assigned to go cover him from time to time. and this was a time when candidates would get in their cars and drive around their state with a driver and maybe another reporter and meet with people in their living rooms it was retail. it was one on one. just as american retailing has clanged, so too has retail
politics. now there are bus trips, hundreds of people. and you have the internet and the way it delivers messages. and so it isn't just -- we don't have torch light parades. we don't have a lot of things in american politics like we used to have. now we have campaigning on facebook, internet, and web sites, you tube videos. you have all the campaigns have trackers who go around and watch every word they say trying to capture them in a gaff. those are things that didn't used to occur. so i think the old style retailing has given way to more whole sealing campaign. host: more of those myths in a couple minutes. let's get a couple calls in first. caller: thank you for c-span and i'm a lutes ran pastor that worked in the farm crisis back in the 70s and 80s and ran
against fred grandy. you might remember me. i certainly thank you in your work you've done a very good job. now with the farmers for rick santorum and just when you were saying we're not really significant any more, well, american agriculture especially iowans, we still feed the word wrled and you can see the food prices doubling in the past year because of china g ports so much of iowa grain and pork products that we're still very significant and what you think with the farm crisis, i sort of warned about the commodity markets and wall street back in the 80s and senator grassley does an excellent job on stopping farm family foreclosures but now we see another round of foreclosures on homes.
with your years of experience, what do you think about the family farm as future and rick and he's backing american agriculture and the family farm? and he is still out there one car caravan and i've ridden with him several times and he's still in homes and he's just a grass roots man just like senator grassley. host: thank you for calling. guest: well, that's one of the things as an observer of this process it's interesting to see rick santorum still kind of doing it the old-fashioned way, over 350 meetings. he really has been out there doing it the way jimmy carter and here at the end he's started to pick back up. so maybe there is still a little bit of reward to candidates who do something more than just run commercials and do big bus trips. he has surged here at the end i
think largely because religious conservatives are starting to coal yes, sir around him as their champion. and they did a lot of good for mike hucky. and if rick santorum can rally those people to his banner he will do well. he's picked up nicely in the polls, running in third place. a far better position than just a few weeks ago. so i think senator santorum has had some success as a political capped date because we think pennsylvania of a large state but there's big pieces of pennsylvania that are pretty rural. so i think he felt right at home campaigning. host: speaking of rallying folks, one of those myths you point out, to win you need to appeal to right wing activists in iowa. guest: well, i think both
parties are sort of captured by their extremes. fur a democrat you need to run to the left in order to win caucuses and republicans need to run to the right. and there's a lot of truth to that. but if you look at the history of the caucuses it has been people who are more centrist who actually wind up with the victory that what happens in both parties is that there are also moderates and centrists and don't make as much noise but they do have a vote and a voice and they're looking for winners. so you'll see like a howard dean for example in the democratic party. he will rise quickly, a lot of support from anti-war activists but then democrats started taking a second look and started thinking maybe they want something else. and you saw buttons, dated dean, marry kerry. and oftentimes in both parties
is the the more centrist capped date who wins. jimmy carter had people on his left. in john kerry certainly had people on his left and this time in 1980 which i think has a lot of parallels with the republican fight of 1980s, george herbert walker bush won with a plurality because conservatives were chopping up their vote. so i think that same sort of thing may happen here. if so that could work to mitt romney's benefit. so that's why i say you've got to appeal to the base but you've also got to not forget the great center of the electorate. . .
. later on in the week, you had a program showing the rally in iowa, and it became clear, first of all, that they were there to disrupt the caucuses, and that was their plan. and that they are very definitely embracing the socialist party. not only that, it was very apparent from rallying that they are a group of really hateful people who refer to newt gingrich as a devil. they have plans to go and disrupt as many caucuses as they could. host: thanks for calling. any perspective on the occupy folks? guest: that is going to be an issue to watch on caucus night. nobody speaks for the movement. they are using their constitutional right to protest and make their point, and there will probably be a few who tried
to disrupt and get media attention on what they do. that is sort of guerrilla theater, and a lot of protests are about that. i doubt it will be very widespread. it may be just one or two or a handful of people here and there would try to do that. host: one of the items folkestone to watch on caucus night is the weather. you call it a myth that the weather will influence the outcome. how come? guest: i have never seen it occur. there was some evidence it occurred in 1972 when you had this first big caucus under the early system in the post-chicago convention rules. the anti-war movement did turned out in spite of a bad storm, and a lot of others stayed home,
which enabled mcgovern to come in second. this is iowa. people are used to getting around in the snow. it particularly motivated -- particularly motivated people who care about their candidate, going just down the street in their precinct -- it is not like you have to drive or even walk very far. i think it has been a mess and part of it has to do with when you are a reporter or politician on election day, you are pretty bored, and there is always a lot of chatter about the weather. my old paper did a pretty good piece in examining this phenomenon in some detail and concluded the same thing i did -- that it is just more talk than fact. it is going to be a nice day on tuesday in iowa, and there is not likely to be a lot of precipitation. it will be warmer than normal, so i expect it to be totally irrelevant. host: you do talk about the motivations of violence to get
out and take part in the process. you say it is a myth that iowa caucus voters take voting more seriously than people in other states. explain that for us. guest: i just do not know how you measure that. i think iowans are diligent. they care. the activists are motivated. i think americans everywhere are that way. i do not think iowa has any franchise on caring about issues, studying issues. many of our callers this morning illustrate the same point. there's a certain frustration by other americans that the iowa activists get all this attention. why can we spread this around some? i've never seen much measurement that shows that ireland's -- iowans really care a lot more. the average caucus goer is higher income. they are better educated, a little bit older than the electorate as a whole, but that is the nature of political
activists. if you think about the act of going out to a party event, it is a pretty high act of sitting gateman. it is more engaging than writing a check to a candidate. you will have a lot of interest in politics from these people, but i do not know that there are any more interested in issues than any other americans. i have never seen a measure prove that. host: you are on the air. go ahead. caller: [inaudible] it don't make sense. not only that, you have people running for president of the united states [inaudible] federal judge. that sounds like china.
that is what i tried to tell people. the problem is not at our back door. if they do not know how to vote, they better learn real quick because i'm going to tell you something -- it is getting bad. not only that, the idea is mitt got this guy from new jersey -- and i know enough about him, but i know lots about him, and that could get myself killed for this. he is connected in new york and new jersey if you know what i mean. i want to thank you for taking my call. host: as we look at the front page of the "daily news quarter meant in new york from yesterday, chris christie. lots of pro-president obama calls this morning. how motivated our iowa republicans to take part in the caucuses because of concessions, worry about the reelection of
the current president? >guest: i think a lot of democrats are worried about it. there's a lot of frustration in the democratic party that certain things have not happened. health care, the war in iraq, the war in afghanistan has gone on or went on too long. but those democrats will come home. i think there will be a decent democratic turnout, and i think president obama will be very competitive in this state. and a -- one of the interesting phenomena to watch out for, and we have heard anecdotes about younger caucus goers -- i have run into too many younger people who said they supported barack obama last time and are now going to support ron paul. do they do this? do they show up? do they change registration? the reason is interesting. they tapped into something our last caller was talking about.
americans are frustrated, angry. we are not happy. we are in a funk. some people on both ends of the spectrum are so angry about the way things are going that they are looking for some president who can make some big change quickly, and i think that is some of ron paul's people, some of the same folks who four years ago were 4 barack obama. it will be interesting to see how many people change their party registration or who are first-time caucus goers. some of the early polling indicated that as much as 1/3 of the caucus-night turnout could be first time caucus goers. that will be something for everyone to keep their eye on as well. host: next caller from los angeles. caller: the gop establishment is wrong to disenfranchise ron paul supporters. i was a republican for many years. i changed to become an
independent, and if the neocon gop wants to put up some mouthpiece like newt romney, we will take our vote and vote for ron paul, and it is guaranteed a 15% vote that way, and we will not buy the line from the republicans saying that a vote for ron paul will put obama in theory there is an argument you could make that obama is better than any neocon republican that will get us into more wars for israel, including iran. host: we will let that, and sand. going to danny now. caller: to go back to the news media, that is why the occupy people exist. because the news media has led us down in this country. we have completely -- the news media has lost its focus.
it is a corporate entity now, and it is in it for money, and it is not there as it was intended, to inform the people, the electorate. at best, corporate news media just does not tell you the facts. at worst, they completely twist the facts. there is no accountability. without an informed electorate, this country is doomed. host: more critique of the media. guest: much of it deserved. the one thing that is saving -- one thing that is saving the country is that there actually is a lot more media today than there ever has been before. we are all washed in information. it is not just three networks and a couple of major networks -- three networks and a couple of major newspapers setting the agenda. the good news is that people who are not satisfied with the information they are getting out
of the mainstream media do have other sources and other places to go. there's a lot of media out there for people to choose from. first amendment is great, and the technology is certainly allowing a lot more people to take advantage of it. host: gene on the line from chicago, a democratic column. caller: -- democratic collar. caller: i would like to know, since there is so much voter suppression going on, will you all have the people going to stay in iowa to show it's, or is it because i know what is 97% white, like you said, and you trust they will go in and not cross over and vote for a democrat? my main question is to ask you all -- why is it that your party -- is so strictly republican party -- is not satisfied with
the lot that you have? you all are scrambling to find somebody to beat this president. you seem like a decent person, so i will not blow you out of the water. i have never seen a republican come on the airwaves that has not bashed this president, so you are pretty good. maybe you can answer me -- why is it that you all are not satisfied with your party and think we should be satisfied with your party? could you answer that question? host: any thoughts? guest: i will let republicans speak for themselves. i am registered independent. to the question about voter suppression, iowa does not have a big tradition of trying to do that. it is a small state, and these are neighborhood meetings. people who show up tend to know your neighbors. anyone were trying to do a native -- major voter suppression effort or trying to
pack caucuses with a bunch of newcomers, it would be hard to do. it would be a pretty large conspiracy, and we would find out about it before it happens. that said, every caucus, there are stories about anecdotal evidence that somebody has done that, but it has never been enough to affect the outcome. we looked at that story after the 2008 caucus, and there was a lot of concern that maybe some people from illinois came in to i know what to try to pack it for barack obama, but it was just anecdotal stuff. i want to address the question about iowa's atypicality. i agree that ios is in many ways not representative of the country as a whole. for barack obama, an african- american candidate who came to iowa and won the caucuses -- the fact that the state was so demographically white was actually politically useful to
him because it convinced a lot of african-american voters, particularly in south carolina, that year was a candidate who could carry white voters. the state may be predominantly white, but i do not think barack obama will tell you that will hurt his candidacy. he did win the iowa caucuses. host: one last call for our guests. howard, calling on the republican line from illinois. caller: the question i have -- the person before me, boy, are they drinking the democratic party kool-aid. anyway, what role did the iowa caucuses -- the occupy i/o caucus groups -- are they going to be playing in this election? you talk about suppression. i'm not sure what point they are trying to prove out there other than to disrupt. host: thanks.
we touched on this a little bit. anything else you want to say? guest: i think there may be some who will try to disrupt it, but i was simply does not have a great tradition of that. i think this has been a great conversation. it is an interesting process. i think it is a healthy process. it is the beginning of the race. not the end of it. host: we are glad you could come again. and with as many times over the years. currently, director of the paul simon public policy institute at southern illinois university. thanks again. guest: thank you. host: coming up -- a discussion of the top stories of 2011. we're going to open up the floor for you and let you talk about any of the top stories that have
moved to or motivated you or you just think were generally important. we will have some lists available for you as well from other sources. you can also post your comments on our facebook page. we will read some of your comments as well. first, we go back to max's highway diner in i know what to talk more about the up coming caucuses. >> it is just right into the breakfast time here and patrons are waiting for their food and led the talking to us about politics. what is your name? caller: phil johnson. >> how much do you follow politics, especially going into 2012? >> some. i listen on the news and stuff, and i listened to potus once in awhile.
i listened to all the candidates. i have not made up my mind who i will vote for this year. >> what do candidates have to say to help you make up your mind? >> i want smaller government, and i want people to have more rights. they are taking our rights away from us. i think there's too much government today. >> with that in mind, is there anyone currently in the field reflecting this kind of thoughts for you? >> probably newt gingrich. i have not followed him a lot, you know, each one. i remember newt gingrich back in the 1990's when i thought he would be a good candidate. >> do you talk politics with your family? >> not very much. >> why not? >> i have a sister having breakfast with me this morning who is a democrat, and i am and republican. we argue about it, so i tried to stay away from it. >> what are you having this morning? >> i was going to have the buffet. >> the choice.
we're talking with another person at max's diner. what is your name? >> frank. >> do you live in iowa? >> yes, 53 years. >> you have probably looked at this process for quite a while. what is your view of it? how do you sum up as far as the process goes? >> i guess i will be glad when it is over. i do not know what to think about the candidates. i am undecided, i guess. i like what the -- what they say. the most important thing is jobs. there's no jobs out here. they are talking about bringing in the immigrants to take our jobs. that worries me because now there's no jobs, and they bring in more of them. you know, what about us? we've got bills to pay. i got bills to pay. i show up to work every day, do my best. i go out and fight for other jobs, and i get doors shut in my face all over town.
i don't know. >> what is your line of work? >> i like lawn care. >> you said jobs were very important to you. specifically, did the candidates -- to any particular candidates say anything about building or creating jobs that is of interest to you? >> i think it was newt gingrich that said government does not make jobs, people do. i do not know. they just have to make jobs more available for people that have lived here their whole lives. i don't know. >> you going to caucus on tuesday? >> i don't know. >> that is two of the opinions here at max's highway diner, talking about politics and the 2012 campaign. >> plenty more coming up later today. rick perry will be on, ann romney.
rick santorum will be part of our coverage, and we will take calls tomorrow. what we are going to do now for these final 40 minutes is take a step back and look at the year, 2011, on this final day of the year. the top stories. what was your top story of 2011 and why? what did this story you are going to tell us about mean to you in terms of significance? here are the numbers to call about what you think is the top news story of 2011. could be in washington, around the country, around the world. republicans -- 202-737-0002. democrats, 202-737-0001. independents, 202-628-0205. you can see in the top left
here, president obama, mission accomplished again, talking there about iraq, obviously. one of the top stories. you can see a cartoon of what looks like harry reid and mitch mcconnell bickering about something on the hill. herman cain here with his nine- nine-nine plan. also one of the top stories according to the hill, here's a photograph or cartoon of an obviously smiling gabrielle giffords smiling after her comeback. osama bin laden, of course, is on their front page. here is a shot of john boehner, the speaker, being pulled by a member of the tea party. the 99% story. just a snippet there. cartoon pictures, drawings of the top 10 stories of 2011.
the associated press put out its own list of the top news stories of 2011, and we will show you what tops the list according to the ap -- the death of osama bin laden. that is the number one news story of 2011, according to the associated press. here is about 45 president -- seconds of president obama making that announcement in may. >> tonight, i can report to the american people and the world that the united states has conducted an operation that killed osama bin laden, the leader of al qaeda, and a terrorist who is responsible for the murder of thousands of innocent men, women, and children. at my direction, the united states launched a targeted operation against that compound in pakistan. a small team of americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and capability. no americans were harmed. they took care to avoid civilian
casualties. after a fire fight, they killed osama bin laden and took custody of his body. host: that was may 1, 2011. japan's various disasters this year, the earthquake and other things that came from that. the triple disaster. arab spring, three. the financial crisis. and the u.s. economy. top five news stories according to the associated press, but we do want to hear from you. st. louis is up first for this segment. douglas, a democrat, what do you say? caller: i am really impressed by the arab spring. i think that led to the occupy movement. i think people need to get their
voices back and take the political scene away from the well-funded people trying to influence it. some of your previous callers talk about drinking the kool- aid. i find that offensive. just because it is not their opinion does not mean it is any less relevant. i get a lot of people who will comment about how they are patriots. i am a democrat, and i served in the marine corps, and i am a patriot, too. that does not make me wrong or them any more right than i am. i think the occupy movement is here to stay. i've not heard anything from the tea party. i did not hear them on the payroll tax issue. they seem to have dropped out. i do not believe they were real to begin with. that is my comment. host: thanks. and would now in west palm beach, florida. an independent. what caught your attention this year? -- edward.
caller: i think the death of the modern -- death of bin laden. that is a major part of what the country has been talking about for the last 10 years. i feel that we have gotten away with, you know, not taking faith as a country. republicans have data that barack obama does not do this or that, but the economy has been on a downspin before he got into office. i think that if republicans would just stop being the party of know and work with this president, i feel that the economy would be in a lot better shape. i think that all of the propaganda that has been the, you know -- republicans have
been bombarded with, many people are not educated enough to know all of the facts. i feel that with the death of bin laden, it has made people see things in a different light. i think that when obama first got into the chair, that felt that he was not strong enough on foreign policy, but he has made an a in that area. i think that democrats and republicans would come together and work in a collaborative way, i think that the country would move on a lot better. host: perspective of edward there in west palm beach, florida. we will do this for about 30 more minutes. elizabeth also in florida, the capital of florida, tallahassee. elizabeth is a republican. caller: i think the top story
for me would be how president obama keeps saying he is for the middle class and wants to help the average american, and yet, he spends his vacation in hawaii. i am middle-income, and i could not afford to do that. they all want to be in the white house, but they are always traveling. maybe if they stayed in the white house and focused on what the problems were, the country would not be in as bad a shape as it is. host: debra is a democrat in houston. caller: i am and democrat and a disabled person, and my story this year is the actual proof that the right dislikes obama. i would not call it racism. i cannot -- i would not go that far. i think they do not like what he stands for, but the fact that he killed osama bin laden, they should have all rallied behind him, and everything he has done, they have obstructed and opposed. i think that it is quite
interesting that the guest you had on just a minute ago, the lady called in and asked about voter suppression and would people showed their it, and the guest responded that it was going to be held at private homes here democrats would hold their caucuses in private homes, and they might be in ghettos or neighborhoods with the disabled and black people and latinos and asians, but yet, we will be held to a strict standard. i am disabled and cannot get down there. mine id was renewed on line, and i had to stapled the paper went to the old one, and i've been told that i may not can vote. i think the voter suppression needs to be looked at, but i think it is very clear that the right has not given obama any credit, and it is just silly
when you look at it, and sad. to be a patriot, that you're supposed to be for smaller government and hate the federal worker. we need more people in federal workers. host: contribution there from debra in houston. robert is calling with his take on the top news story of 2011. robert is an independent. go ahead, please. caller: ok, about five months ago, on the internet, they had with the head guy of search security was going to ask obama to cash in government bonds that they receive for money that the government borrowed. they want to cash them in. the amount of money was $6.50 trillion. i would like to know how they
figure social security is broke when social security holds $6.50 trillion in government bonds, and they want to close out social security said they do not have to pay it? is that what it is? host: thank you for calling. back to the ap list of news stories of 2011. one, osama bin laden's debt. japan's troubled disaster. the arab spring. financial crisis in the eu. the u.s. economy. they move on to say the penn state sex abuse scandal. gaddafi toppled in libya. fiscal showdowns in congress. the occupy wall street protests, and shooting up congresswoman giffords. you can weigh in the on the phone by writing us or sending us a twitter message. c-spanwj is our twitter handle.
also, facebook is another way to weigh in. here are a couple of facebook messages on all this. we have best books to post their, spirit we ask you a couple of hours ago to do this. jeff says the uprising of people throughout the middle east is a top news story. another viewer writes the continuing war on the middle class, corporate takeover of our government. top news stories of 2011. berkeley, west virginia, now. carl, good morning. caller: good morning. my top story was never told. at a 6% of all blacks voted for president obama -- 96% of all blacks voted for president
obama. 96% of all whites had voted for mccain, with that have been discrimination? is it not possible for the blacks to commit discrimination? that is the story that was never told. host: thanks, carl. arlene, north carolina. caller: i think you started off earlier saying that we could mention anything we wanted to. you were just going to have a list of suggestions. i am going to talk about two things. there are two things that have not been talked about. if it is possible for people to go to the c-span washington journal library and look up impact two or three months and fined a guest that was on with the last name rubin.
she made a freudian slip and said that basically romney was going to be the nominee, had already been selected by some other method besides people deciding, and if you try to go back and fix it, people can go back and check that. the other one was that no media ever challenges the fed, and people are being steered toward close some entity once to be president. mccain ran with palin. obviously, these two people were not going to be wanted for president and vice-president. people that would not make it, could not make it.
then, you have people running for president on the republican side, and they are obviously not people we would have really chosen if we could choose ourselves. people are being steered. i do not believe in this political system. i am 63. i am watching it, and this is more like the movie "rollerball" like a sports team. you pick your team and hope it wins. but it is not a game. this is real and people are being steered toward whatever choice has already been made. host: thank you for calling. your top stories of 2011. some are mentioned the big stories we all know about and have lived through. others talking about things they
say have not been mentioned all that much. we will listen to anything you have to say about the top news stories of 2011. here is a twitter message. the big story is the u.s. media dumbing down the u.s. people, the destruction of freedom of the press, destroying of whistle-blower protection. one viewer's twitter message. here is president obama and speaker boehner from late july on the debt talks. another big story. >> until sometime early today when i could not get a phone call returned, my expectation was that speaker boehner was going to be willing to go to his caucus and ask them to do the tough thing but the right thing. i think it has proven difficult for speaker boehner to do that. i have been left at the altar now a couple of times. i think the one of the questions the republican party will have to ask itself is -- can they say
yes to anything? can they say yes to anything? >> i take the same oath of office as the president of the united states. i've got the same response abilities as the president of the united states, and i think that is for both of us to do the best interest of what is in our country. i can tell you that it is not in the best interest of our country to raise taxes during this difficult economy and it is not in the best interests of our country to ignore the serious spending challenges that we face. host: from the past to the present, today's "washington post" says the president is delaying his request for a hike in the debt limit. this is from honolulu.
under the request, the administration had planned to submit on friday, congress would have had 15 days to say no, or the nation's debt ceiling would have automatically been raised from $15.20 trillion to $16.40 trillion. the house is out of session, the senate is gonna tell the 23rd. leaders of both sessions ask the white house to delay its request said the white house could take the measure after returning from winter break. president agreed and will submit the legislation a little bit later, in keeping with the congressional timeline. maryland, james, a democrat, your top story. caller: i would say the debt ceiling issue you just discussed.
i just did not understand. you had a previous caller who said she would not say racism, but i believe it is racism. this gentleman cannot get nothing done. he is all our president. give him an opportunity to get something done. when he took over, the economy was in shambles. i have been out of work for 18 months, and it is just ridiculous. but in make ends meet. that is what it is all about, making your ends meet. i do not understand what the problem is. let's all just try to get things done together. it does not matter if you are black, white, orange, or green. everybody has got to get along some time. >> thanks for calling. "new york post" cartoon, the last day of the year.
detroit, michigan, jimmy, republican, top news story of 2011. what do you say? caller: the biggest story should be -- and the american public needs to chew on this -- is the murder of border patrol agent brian terry. think about these animals that you are voting for year. the government does not care about you. it is pretty clear by their actions. i will hang up. thank you so much. >> kevin, independent, good morning to you. caller: i wanted to talk about libya. i thought that was a pretty good story. we basically pick winners and losers over there. iran did the same thing in 2009, and obama just at like the green people did not really mean that much to anybody and did not do anything about it, but libya,
gaddafi, he does something, and we act on it. i found that a very critical point in our history, where we pick winners and losers during war. host: thanks for calling to that part of the world. lambert "businessweek" had its own review -- bloomberg "businessweek." here's a december clash in cairo. dramatic-looking photo. we hear from oklahoma, democratic collar. -- caller. caller: i am a democrat. i am sick and tired of hearing liberal, liberal, liberal. we are not all liberal. we do not believe in abortion or same-sex marriages.
on this topic that you are on, the number one thing is getting bin laden. the second is bringing our troops home. the third is trying to help the poor. obama is trying to help the port. he has love in his heart. he has the bible in his heart. that is all i had to say. thank you. host: thank you. from facebook, a top news story of 2011, one of our viewers rights the failed tea party attempt to force the u.s. into the fall, giving obama all the cards on letting the bush tax cuts expire at the end of 2012. virginia, oliver, republican, you are up now. caller: the biggest story, and i
have to give president obama credit, is bringing our soldiers back. and in the iraq war has saved many lives. we keep saying things about how we love our soldiers, but this is an issue that does not come to their mind. the soldiers are coming back with their families. obama did the right thing. although i am and republican and voted for bush twice, but that decision was the right decision. the second one was the killing of the lot and -- the killing of osama bin laden pure the previous administration tried for eight years with billions of dollars, but obama completed the job. we have to give him credit. host: thank you. washington, d.c., fred, independent. caller: yes, the reason i am calling -- mr. romney made the comment that corporations are people. this is very important for me
because it shows me that our democracy is shifting. the reason i am bringing this up -- i'm making a short comment about the capitalism we have him. macro capitalism and micro capitalism, meaning that we can say -- this is my own comment. i would say that communism is state-of capitalism -- state- owned capitalism. if we allow corp. takeover, that will end up -- we will end up to an almost dictatorship.
thank you very much for taking my call. host: thanks for calling. top news story of 2011. savannah, georgia, democratic line. go ahead, sir. caller: i want to point out that one of the stories i think was definitely missing from the list and is very important is the fact that we are out of iraq. if you combine that with the killing of osama bin laden and look at the last few news stories of the last few years, you realize all in all that president obama has fulfilled more promises than any president i can remember in a long time. i just want to make one comment about the candidates we have for president -- it is a pretty small group.
it includes super wealthy egomaniacs, paranoid psychotics, sociopaths. any of them as president will ensure the further erosion of this country into a terrifying mix of oligarchy. host: david on the line from new jersey. independent. what is your top news story? caller: i think japan has done a great job of rebuilding as opposed to haiti, which had billions of our dollars. japan seems to be doing a heck of a lot better in a lot shorter of a span of time. i am curious as to why people are not following the money that they gave out of their hearts to these countries that are so hit with devastating, and believable, horrific things that happened to them. japan seems to be the only country that seems to be really working very efficiently and
getting things done. people always seem to bring it back to race. people are always wondering where money is going. i have said several times -- social security for two years took and kept social security money that was supposed to go to the disabled, billions of dollars that did not go to the disabled people for two years and it is finally coming back to the disabled people that deserve it and need it for the cost of living, which is less than 3%. that is really not even with the tax rate is. host: thank you for calling. another twitter message. they agree with the ap, the penn state scandal. they write via tweeted at college sports has been hurt beyond measure. to the pages of the "wall street journal" -- they say that the
dowel ends a year of some alt -- of tumult up 6%. they also write to us this morning about the big verizon story. we thought we would mention it. verizon wireless abandoned the new fee. at his part of a larger group of corporate pull back or retreats as they talk about. all pulling back on certain new policies that were going because folks a little extra money or create some controversy. you can read that at the "wall street journal" today. lead item in the "washington post" -- observers inspire syrian protesters. it is the lead, and it says tens of thousands of protesters poured into streets across syria, braving a government onslaught of teargas and gunfire. the demonstrations marked a
display of renewed vigor for opponents of president al assad, were eager to make their case during a visit by the arab league observers. next call, iowa, a democrat. caller: good morning to everybody and happy new year. i think we ought to start out the new year by letting everybody know that we would save hundreds of billions of dollars a year, according to the "financial times" and our congressional budget office if we would just go to ever -- medicare for everybody. the whole country would say all those billions that the ceo's are taking home and all the overhead that even up to 60% is what we are told by the "des moines register" a few days ago. i would like to correct the story that i told three months ago that said the afghanistan
deal was over the oil in tajikistan. it is not. it is turkman a stand. the soviets wanted to take that oil down to the coast and over to india by pipeline, and i made a mistake when i phoned in about it before. host: thank you. peter, republican from arizona. glad to have you. go ahead. caller: i was talking about " fast and furious." i do not see how a whole group -- i think it was a scheme that came up for them to go ahead and
pass more gun laws saying that all these guns that are coming from the u.s. to mexico so they can come in. i did not know it was legal to pass laws -- gun laws in four states and exclude everyone else. i believe president obama probably screwed this whole thing up so they could go ahead with this -- against the second amendment of the united states. thank you. host: thanks, peter. another message via facebook. top news story. the senate not passing a budget in 950-plus days. this is a root cause of the stalemate we keep butting up against. close second is the eu crisis.
anthony wiener was one of the other big stories -- anthony weiner was one of the other big stories in washington. he held a couple of meetings with reporters. here is the congressman. former congressman from new york. >> i make this apology to my neighbors and my constituents, but i make it particularly to my wife. i had hoped to be able to continue the work that the citizens of my district elected me to do -- to fight for the middle class and those struggling to make it. unfortunately, the distraction that i have created has made that impossible. so today, i am announcing my resignation from congress. host: back in mid-june there. indiana, danny, independent. caller: i think the top story of the year should be the national defense authorization act. i think it is terrible.
it is ridiculous what the government has plans to do to the american citizens. host: what are you hearing? caller: it basically turn america into a battleground. they have the ability to a rest, detained, tortured, and assassinate american citizens with impunity. i am sure you have seen the anonymous video. it is not just for terrorists. it is inclusive of american citizens as well. i think it is absolutely horrendous that 93 congressmen and women voted in favor of this bill. it is ridiculous. why would you ever do something like that that could bring down terror on american people, worse than anything al qaeda could do? host: 2 michigan now, selma, a democrat. what has moved you the most? caller: for me, the first thing is that citizens united
decision. that, to me -- it just devastates this country. we always knew that money was involved in elections, but now, it is just -- i mean, you just buy them straight out so that everyday people, you know, have billions. they do not have millions -- nobody even cares. even the people who are running, they do not care what you want, what you say. it is not even about s anymore. people should just be terrified about that. what bothers me is people literally trying to take the vote, the one thing is voting, and we have never had a problem with over voting. our problem is not getting enough people to vote.
this thing is playing out, and many people are not just out rates. it is the vote. the republicans intend to take the election, and i think the americans elected group or whatever that is going around, it is just something to divide the democratic vote. it is nothing but a plot to take over america. the rest of this release will not have a say so. host: that was our last call for the segment. you want to continue to post comments, you can and our facebook page. want to remind you, we continue with our political programming through the day and weekend, right up through the caucus meetings on tuesday night. look for rick perry live first
up today a little bit later this morning. it is at 11:30 in the morning. he will be in fort dodge, iowa. mitt romney is spending much of the day in new hampshire, but his wife will be in ottumwa, iowa. that is at 1:15. we will stay there in the early evening for an event held by former pennsylvania senator rick santorum. that will start at 6:00 p.m. eastern time. we will take your calls at different parts of the day today, but we will take lots more of your calls tomorrow on the debt -- -- on the "washington journal." over the next seven days, our guests include the president of the aisle of faith and for the coalition. we will also talk with simon conway, a talk-show host for who radio, and ann selzer will be
on. people listen up 7:00 central time. 8:00 eastern, we will hear those poll results, the final "des moines register" poll prior to the caucus. we hope you will stay with us through the weekend. enjoy the rest of your day here. stay tuned for lots more politics. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] >> in the last iowa caucuses in 2008, barack obama won the
democratic caucuses and went on to win the presidency. mike huckabee won the republican caucuses but dropped out two months later. see what the bill looks like online at the c-span video library. our cameras are following candidates at events throughout the state. political guess are taking your calls every morning on "washington journal." we will show live coverage from two of the caucuses from the central and western parts of the state on c-span and c-span2. later on, the results of all of the caucuses and candidates be sent -- speeches. see what the candidates have said on issues important to you and read the latest from candidates, political reporters, and people like you from social media sites at c-span.org /campaign2012. /campaign2012.